Pros and Cons of Using Personality Tests for Recruiting Employees

(Originally posted on allBusiness)

Personality tests reveal unique traits about your employees that you may not have otherwise known, and can also help you determine how they will work with one another in a team dynamic. While some hiring managers use personality tests as a valuable onboarding tool, others argue that they should not be used as the “end all, be all” of measuring team cohesion. That’’s why we asked eight entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following question:

Q. Should I use personality tests for recruiting/developing employees? Why or why not?

1. Yes—You Can Help Employees Communicate

Diana GoodwinI’m a big fan of the Myers-Briggs Personality test when it comes to developing employees. By understanding their personality types, I’m able to better grasp their communication style and how our personalities can work well and develop together. I also share my personality type with the team so that they get a better sense of what makes me tick. —–Diana GoodwinAquaMobile Swim School


2. Yes—You Gain a Better Understanding of Your Team’s Strengths

 At ZinePak we had everyone on our team take the StrengthsFinder 2.0 test. Not only did we as supervisors see the answers, but we had each team member share their results. Creating an internal understanding of what one’s strengths and weaknesses are is key to developing teamwork. Transparency allowed team members to help one another in areas where they know others might struggle. —Kim KaupeZinePak


3. No—You Should Use Your Team’s Judgment

 It’s great when your company is growing, but it can also be a headache to determine which candidate is the best fit when recruiting. The most accurate way to know if someone’s the right fit for the team is simply by asking your team. After formal interviews, ask the candidate to meet for coffee with the team so they can interact in a relaxed setting and determine the candidate’s compatibility. —–David TomasCyberclick


4. Yes—You Can Gut-Check First Impressions

Douglas BaldasareAbsolutely! We use the DiSC system, which outputs incredibly insightful details about the person, how they work, and what motivates them. It also tells us key features of their personality. So, for example, if the person is applying for an accounting position and they’’re not detail oriented—that’’s bad. Personality tests are a great supporting tool that help us gut-check our impressions. —Douglas BaldasareChargeItSpot


5. Yes—You Can Eliminate Biases

Elle KaplanAt LexION Capital, I’’ve found that personality tests are an absolute necessity. When it comes to interviews, there can be a great deal of bias. A person can be great at interviewing and a complete charmer, but might not have the right personality for the job. Tests take off the rose-colored glasses and give objective and data-driven metrics to aid the rest of the hiring process. —Elle KaplanLexION Capital


6. No—You Should Test for Skills

Jesse KolberPersonality is important, but at the end of the day you have to be confident that the employee can perform the job. Rather than relying on personality tests, develop your own tests that target the specific skills the employee should possess. Give prospective employees the opportunity to prove their prowess on tasks that they will need to perform on a daily basis should they be hired. —Jesse KolberLogicPrep


7. Yes—You Can Find Synergy

Jesse KolberWhile it’s important to find competent employees, it is equally important to hire those individuals who are compatible with one another, will work well in your preexisting team and who share similar ideas and personality traits. This will foster an environment of good critical thinking while reducing friction, mitigating possible conflicts, and ensuring your team is built for success. —Blair ThomasEMerchantBroker


8. Yes—Better Interviews, Better Teams

Dusty WunderlichPersonality tests don’t predict job performance. But you should still use them because they can help you get a better sense of who your applicants are, and they’ll help you have more productive and insightful interviews. They’re also incredibly useful when it comes to managing employees and communicating or collaborating within teams. – —Dusty WunderlichBristlecone Holdings